On my journey from “we to me,” I am learning a number of valuable lessons, one of which is to build an army of friends.
One of my best friends recently said to me, “Please don’t be upset when I say, ‘I’m so happy to have you back’.” I wasn’t upset. I was honestly happy. I was relieved. After 13 years of being in a we, my friends still liked and wanted to be around me.
It’s true, I had become less available to my friends because I put my partner ahead of my friendships. I thought that was what one does when in a relationship.
By default, I put his group of friends ahead of mine. I put my friendships on the back-burner. They could (and should) have lived in harmony.
Another one of my best friends (yes, I’m a grown up and can have more than one), told me she gets through single-life by having an army of people around her.
- Don’t know how to fix a car? She has a friend that’s a mechanic.
- Something goes wrong with the air conditioning in her house? Her neighbor knows the ins and outs of HVACs.
- Want a glass of wine? She has a pool of friends who are always on the other end of the phone, ready for a good Merlot.
Without realizing it, I have that too. And in the last couple of months, my army has shown up eqipped and ready.
- Assembling a table? I have a friend willing to go under police barricades to read instructions and help me lift it (more on that in an upcoming blog).
- Hanging up art? I have a friend with tools that will drive 30 minutes to deliver them.
- Help motivating me to get off the couch? I have a friend who’s been looking for a walking partner anyway.
- Severe burn? I have a friend who gave me an aloe plant (and showed me how to get the gel out of the leaves).
- In jail? I can name five people who would bail me out.
On and on. I realized I have an army that has just been waiting to be deployed.
Weapons of mass support
But, these are more than just people who help me in a bind. These are the people who encouraged me to write this blog and they get excited every week I post. They will call me to laugh at my latest attempt in the kitchen, support me when I’m not 100% confident in my decisions and push me to be my best self.
These people don’t criticize or judge me. I have heard more, “You’re capable,” and “I think what you’re doing is brave,” about my decision to write, my attitude about starting over and my positivity about the future.
They will pick up the phone at 7:30 a.m. or 11:00 p.m. to talk with me about my cat, breakup, job or a newly discovered TV show (who knew there was SO much good TV these days?).
They are armed with positivity, support and love. My army is growing stronger and we’re all happier for it.